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Scarlet Violet: Animated Freaks

Scarlet Violet: Animated Freaks

Sleaze/Glam/Hard Rock
Rating: 3.5/5.0

On their first full-length album 'Animated Freaks' Italian rockers Scarlet Violet are going full throttle down the Sunset Boulevard of yesteryear to deliver their version of raunchy and rowdy sleaze rock. On both counts, the sleaze and the rock, Scarlet Violet proves they know their stuff even if much of this is derivative and sometimes tedious.

For the sleaze side, the songs are the usual anthems to wild living, hard drinking, and promiscuous women described in glorious vulgar detail. This is probably where Scarlet Violet falls the hardest. If their intent is to resurrect the style of the greats and theirs heroes (like Guns N' Roses, RATT, Hanoi Rocks, Motley Crüe, or LA Guns), they should know that these bands thrived mostly on subtlety and innuendo in their lyrics. In other words, more times than not, they didn't need to be explicit to tell the tale; they left it to your imagination. In their case, Scarlet Violet pays neither tribute to their history nor demonstrates real imagination. They sound more like an angry punk band whining about how their idiot parents and evil society screwed them over making them drug infested gutter waifs.

On the rock side, Scarlet Violet's songs tend to be either fast melodic rockers with great hooks and thrilling guitar work or simply slow, heavy riffing monotonous numbers saved only by the same ripping guitar work. For the former, simply follow the even number tracks through number eight, skip ten, and move to eleven. The best of these are 'Hollywood' and Dead For Good' where guitarist Fylo delivers his best stuff, often sounding like Slash. On the latter songs, mostly the odd numbers, the pace slows and the songs become routinely tedious. Yet, I would encourage you to listen to them at least once just to hear Fylo's immensely enjoyable fretwork. Following the tedious theme, after about first third of 'Animated Freaks,' LA's vocals began to grate on me. Without doubt, he's got the requisite sneering, snotty, bad ass attitude in his voice: I don't want to say he can't sing, there's just little variation.

Scarlet Violet proves they have the sleaze rock attitude and chops on 'Animated Freaks,' their full-length debut. Yet, the music is schizophrenic: either exceedingly rowdy and entertaining or derivative and tedious. The high point is the brilliant guitar work, the low point the flat vocal performance. Scarlet Violet is a good band with promise; they just need to mature some more. Recommended.

In Short

Scarlet Violet proves they have the sleaze rock attitude and chops on 'Animated Freaks,' their full-length debut. Yet, the music is schizophrenic: either exceedingly rowdy and entertaining or derivative and tedious. The high point is the brilliant guitar work, the low point the flat vocal performance. Scarlet Violet is a good band with promise; they just need to mature some more.

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